The King and I

Growing up, I used to wonder why my parents really insisted on me speaking in Kelantanese dialect, even when I didn’t want to. Their reason was because the language was their mother tongue and they made it their responsibility to preserve it. They continuously persuaded me to speak and also taught my younger brother and sister, who can now speak the dialect fluently. I quote what my parents said:

“We would be proud to have a child that goes back to their home country and confidently speaks to the local people in their dialect. It would be rude to say ‘Oh sorry, love. I was born and bred in England and I can’t understand a word that you are saying or speak your language.’ And that, my child, is very disrespectful!”

Despite the endless support which was given by my parents, I used to hate meeting other Malaysians in the UK. They made fun of me when I spoke Malay because I was speaking in Kelantanese dialect. I am not talking about kids, I am talking about adults. Most of them had children the same age as me or even older. They laughed at each and every word that came out of my mouth. As a result of that, my confidence to continue speaking Malay was killed and that added to my refusal to speak the language. I questioned a lot, “Why did people make fun of Kelantanese dialect?” but the answer remained a mystery.

Time passed and now I am 10 years old. My parents didn’t stop telling me stories about Malaysia. One day, I heard my parents talking about His Majesty, the Sultan of Kelantan, Sultan Muhammad V. He sounded like an extremely humble, down-to-earth person. I heard many captivating stories about him and his virtuous qualities. He behaves like a common man and prefers to go out without any bodyguards. When a big flood hit Kelantan in 2014, His Majesty rushed out in his truck without anyone accompanying him and aided those in need. He is also occasionally seen voluntarily digging graves with common people. This marvellous Sultan regularly visits mosque and doesn’t claim a special place for himself in the front line. Sometimes, he even leads the prayer himself. He loves his people and wants to be close to their heart, especially on religious occasions. So for the last 10 nights of Ramadan, he opens his palace to the public to let people pray and read Quran all night long. And on Eid ul-Adha, he performs the slaughtering duties himself. To add to his brilliance, he changed the King’s regal salutation from ‘Daulat Tuanku’ (Long Live the King) to ‘Allahu Akbar’ (God is Great) as he is a religious man and strongly upholds his religion. He really is a modest, meek ruler who doesn’t mind to get his hands dirty and is caring about his people.

Finding out that he did all of these wonderful things made me adore him even more. I soon found out that His Majesty was going to be coronated as Yang di-Pertuan Agong of Malaysia (the King of Malaysia) and that made me look up to him even more! I was motivated and started to regain my confidence in speaking Malay. If the King of Malaysia can speak in Kelantanese dialect, then why can’t I? Thank you for inspiring me, Your Majesty, a boy in a foreign land! You are one in a million! So let His Majesty be an example to all of us! Be gratified of who you are, never be ashamed of your roots and your dialect but always remember to remain humble so that Together We Can Change The World! NOW I CAN SAY THAT MY NAME IS OMAR MUKHTAR BIN OMAR MUKHLIS AND I AM A PROUD KELANTANESE FROM MALAYSIA!

Written by The Pawsome Lion on 24/04/2017 in conjunction with the coronation of the country’s sovereign, Sultan of Kelantan, Sultan Muhammad V, as the 15th Yang di-Pertuan Agong of Malaysia.

the king and I photo.jpg

41 thoughts on “The King and I

  1. Hi Omar, I am happy to read your story about Kelantan. Eventhough I am from Pahang, Malaysia but I am very proud about our new King of Malaysia. Keep writing, son.

    Auntie Intan.
    Kuala Lumpur.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Salaam Auntie Intan! Thank you so much for your kind words and PAWSOME support! Words can’t express my appreciation. You are PAWSOME! 😀 I am glad that you enjoyed reading my humble blog!


    • Salaam! Thank you very much for your kind compliments and PAWSOME support! Words can’t express my appreciation! I’m glad that you find my writing appealling. Be sure to read my next post!


  2. Hello,
    That was a nice picture of yours. I had to admit that, you had a maximum utilized of vocabularies in a post, and I’m so jealous cause I’m 29 and you wrote better than me. Lol.
    I love english subject so much that during an english class, I always raised my hand to voluntarily read for the whole class, somehow, I didn’t pick because my teacher prefered someone else than me to participate as well.
    Since I’m not a good speaker in english language but I really enjoy to write, until today I’m still writing some lame things about my life. (:
    That way, I can share my thoughts and my life experience in my own way.
    What actually bothered me nowadays was that, even in Malaysia, specifically Melaka, most of our Malay customers tend to speak English and…I felt like, am I in London or am I in Melaka? Lol. I don’t blame anyone here but, this is what we call hometown, and most people speak foreign language in their hometown? Thats a little bit funny and I would say, “apa-apa jelah”.
    I really support your parents that they really encourage you to speak our local language. Somehow, I missed those days when foreign language is our second language. Now, english is like our first language and I really uncomfortable with it. It’s good to speak foreign language in overseas but, not really recommended in a place we call hometown.
    It’s good now that you actually realized the importance of preserving our culture.
    Please continue writing till the end of your life. So that, our future generations will not forget our culture. 😦
    Till then, sending my support from Melaka, Malaysia. 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

    • Hey there! Thank you so much for taking your precious time to read my post. I really appreciate it as well as your kind compliments and PAWSOME support. Like you, I strongly believe that we should all know how to speak our native language and use it in our hometown instead of speaking English. It is important to know our mother tongue and use it to speak with the locals in our home town as well as knowing a wide range of other languages!


  3. Dear Omar Mukhtar,

    I’m very pleased to be reading this piece of writing, not only because it is well written but more importantly because I forsee what an inspiring young man you will become. I am teacher of young adults and it is not that frequent that I come across such passion and vision amongs people of such young age. I’m happy to know we share the same vision to inspire and I hope you will continue doing what you do until you gray. Continue to write and inspire, may this be your means to benefit the ummah.

    عن جابر قال : قال رسول الله صلى الله عليه وسلم : « المؤمن يألف ويؤلف ، ولا خير فيمن لا يألف ، ولا يؤلف، وخير الناس أنفعهم للناس »

    Diriwayatkan dari Jabir berkata,”Rasulullah saw bersabda,’Orang beriman itu bersikap ramah dan tidak ada kebaikan bagi seorang yang tidak bersikap ramah. Dan sebaik-baik manusia adalah orang yang paling bermanfaat bagi manusia.” (HR. Thabrani dan Daruquthni)

    Your’s sincerely,
    Nadiah Hamidon
    The Netherlands

    Liked by 1 person

    • It was nice to read to writing Mokhtar..
      Cant believe it…its written by 10 years old kids..
      Surprising..your writing is awesome dik!!
      Keep it up deh…
      Teruskea menulis dgn caro adik tersendiri..
      Moga berjaya dunio akhirat..Moga terus jdi anak soleh and abg hok baik utk Fatimah dan Ali..
      Full support from Aunty Ehe…

      Liked by 1 person

      • Hello! Thank you so much for taking your time to read my humble blog and leaving such kind words and support! Words can’t express my appreciation! I’m really glad to know that you enjoyed reading my writing!


    • Salaam! I would like to thank you for your kind words and PAWSOME support! Words cannot express my appreciation! I am always trying to inspire people through my writing and I will never give up. Maybe one day, I will be able to change the world! I hope that you will be able to achieve your goals too! Be sure to keep your eyes open for the next post!


  4. wow, such a good story which it really relates to me on certain aspect since I am Kelantanese too… but u such a matured a kid till u can write this and this story really captivating me especially on the part “Why did people make fun of Kelantanese dialect”. Even i keep wondering to myself that questions too. THANKS A LOT , REALLY INSPIRING ME and KEEP IT UP…

    Liked by 1 person

    • Hello! Thank you very much for taking your time to read my blog. I highly appreciate your kind words and PAWSOME support! I’m really happy to have inspired you through my writing. Be sure to read my next post!


  5. MasyaAllah! Beautiful writing. I just cant believe that you’re actually 10years old.

    Keep writing boy.

    support from your homeland peeps.

    Sek kito jange pecoh!

    Liked by 2 people

  6. Assalamualaikum Omar that is one inspiring story inshaAllah one day you will be that kind of King be good to people. Your English n composition is amazing for a young boy like you. I’ve enjoyed reading it. Yr parents hv raised u well with good adaab n etiquettes. My arwah mum is kelantanese n I don’t know much about our family history. If you can do research about the names Wan and Niks how they get that title it would be great. JazakAllah from Aunty Ruhaya.keep writing. You make us proud 💕


  7. salamullah alaikum

    hi there, i am truly inspired by your writing, you are 10 years younger than me but i guess i am not able to write these thoughts just like you. you really describe the majesty so well, you expressed what i have been kept for a very a long time. i am a kelantanese abroad as well, it’s been hard for me for a few times when i speak malay language kelantanese dialects people will make laugh of me, after sometimes: im able to to change my dialect to standard malay dialect until people dont really trust me that i am a kelantanese girl since the kelantan accent in me seems dissapearing, true it makes me sad until i one day i decided to just use the dialect. thank you for inspiring posts. btw my aunt lives in bromyard, birmingham too, i am sure to drop by once i am in the uk..currently in jordan studying arabic language and its literature.

    xoxo- afiqah


  8. Omar dear… i am not a kelantanese but love hearing their dialect because we are malaysians Where we are born…Omar be proud of yourself your keturunan and sure here we are proud too that the Malays exist thru out the world anddd never forgetting their mother’s land😍 Salam aidil fitri my boy make us proud back home yea


  9. Assalamualaikum mukhtar.

    We shared the same experience. I grew up in KL, whenever i spoke in kelantanese dialect in school (i dont know it was kelantanese dialect that time) , they laugh at me. I went to kampung and they also laugh at my dialect. I really hate it and decided to speak full malay or english wherever i go. But when i grew up now, somehow i kinda regret it. I tried so hard to speak the dialect fluently again but failed. Dont be like me. It is actually feels great being able to speak more than one language!


  10. Hi there Omar..I’m Auntie Aini..Though i’m a born bred Singaporean i have always been proud of my kelantanese heritage..My mum is a kelantanese..Spending time with family from my maternal side has helped me to speak and understand kelantanese..And it has definitely helps me to bond with my kelantanese relatives whenever i visit them..What you wrote is really an eye opener…feeling regretful now because none of our children can speak nor understand looks like understanding and speaking kelantanese will stop at my generation..That thought saddens me though..
    Anyway…my dear Omar you certainly have a flair for writing…Keep it up!..💖


  11. Nice write up boy! Keep on writing. Pls don’t get offended if u think “ppl make fun of Kelantanese dialect”..actually they aren’t cos I’m Perakian living in the Northern part & most peeps would try to imitate Kedahan slang & I don’t mind about it. To keep the language alive, we need continuation from young & old generation not specifically those who came from the same roots. Outsiders should be welcomed! Cheers 🙂


  12. assalamualaikum omar mukhtar!! you have a big talent in writing right? im very proud of you. what you would like to be when you grow up? saya doakan yang terbaik untuk awak dan sekeluarga. how old are you now? bye2. GOODLUCK!!

    from nurina, negeri sembilan


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